Qatar condemns the leaking of the Riyadh Agreement

13 July 2017

The Government of the State of Qatar regrets the fact that member nations of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) continue to violate the GCC’s bylaws, the Riyadh Agreement of 2013, the 2014 supplement to that Agreement and international law through their blockade of the State of Qatar.

Our Government further regrets that these governments have attempted to undermine the efforts of His Highness the Emir of Kuwait and US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson to resolve the current crisis by leaking selective excerpts of the Riyadh Agreement on the eve of Secretary Tillerson’s visit to Qatar. Their actions demonstrate that the blockading nations are not interested in engaging in honest negotiations to resolve our differences.

As the governments of Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Bahrain are aware, the Riyadh Agreement provides a mechanism for registering complaints by any Gulf Cooperation Council member nation against any other. Further, GCC bylaws stipulate that any GCC member can request an urgent meeting with another GCC member nation, either on a bilateral basis or under the auspices of the GCC Council.

No such complaints were made or meetings requested before Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Bahrain initiated their unprovoked and unjustified blockade against Qatar on 5 June. Instead, these nations organized a smear campaign in the international media to damage Qatar’s reputation, and then publicized fabricated quotes by His Highness the Emir of Qatar and Qatar’s Foreign Minister designed to inflame public opinion against our country.

The fact that the blockading nations undertook a campaign of duplicity and subterfuge rather than pursue their complaints through established GCC mechanisms is a clear indication that their intention was not to raise concerns relating to the Riyadh Agreement but to destabilize Qatar’s government and undermine Qatar’s sovereignty.

The hostile actions taken by the blockading nations contradict the purposes and principles enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations, which, among other things, stipulates that blockades are the exclusive mandate of the UN Security Council. The actions of the blockading nations also violate the principles of the sovereign equality of states, nonintervention and non-interference in the internal affairs of other nations, and freedom of international trade and navigation, all of which are enshrined in international law.

Despite the hostile and illegal actions of the blockading nations, the Government of the State of Qatar remains open to negotiations to resolve the current crisis. We are grateful for the mediation efforts of His Highness the Emir of Kuwait and of US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, and we will continue to work with them and all parties to reach a just and fair resolution to the current dispute.